Willie Doan Deakins was Roy’s delightful aunt. Her love of flowers and eye for beauty could be seen in her well designed and tended gardens. Several of her plants were likely starts from her mother’s or grandmother’s original plants (roses, phlox, peonies, lilac, mock orange, iris, and spirea) from the Homeplace. We chose to use these plants as starts for Aunt Willie’s Wildflowers.
A journal Aunt Willie kept while building the house in 1939-40 includes entries describing flower plantings which we try to duplicate when we can. A wildflower collection compiled by her brother Bruce (Roy’s dad) for a school project at Holston School in 1926 is still preserved in a binder complete with dried flowers, dates, and farm locations.
You may still find blood root in the “low places in the woods” when you walk the 6-generation-old farm today. Our hope is that through Aunt Willie’s Wildflowers, the love of all things wild that grow and blossom will pass beyond our family to any who would choose to share in all that God graciously bestows.